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Further Disgrace

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For how long will the ‘farmer’ leaders disassociate themselves from the actions of those who are participating in their agitation against the farm laws? It must be recalled how particular Mahatma Gandhi was about the purity of means while carrying out his movement against British Imperialism. It was important for him that the objectives not be tarnished by the actions of those fighting for them, which was why he suspended his movement when it went off the rails. These are the principles that India’s protestors claim to uphold, particularly those presently in the opposition, but quickly abandon at the first opportunity.

The farmers’ movement has already discredited itself by inflicting economic and other hardship upon the common people, rather than inconveniencing the government. There has been ample evidence presented by the media of the radical activists of several kinds that have flocked to take advantage of their cause. The incidents at the Red Fort in Delhi were a demonstration of this. Unfortunately, the leaders have pretended throughout that such elements were not with them, while happily using their numbers and intimidatory tactics to further their cause. They remained unashamedly unconcerned even after the rape of a woman participating in one of their rallies, who died in hospital, later; once again refusing to take any responsibility.

Even after the brutal beating to death of BJP workers in Lakhimpur Kheri, Rakesh Tikait tried to brazen it out by claiming it was a natural ‘reaction’ to the running over of their activists. That just about justifies all lynchings that result from one ‘provocation’ or the other. Soon after, one of the groups, reportedly Nihangs, ‘not part of the movement’ but present at the very frontline of the farmers’ blockade at Sindhu, carried out the Taliban like execution of a ‘Dalit’ individual for alleged sacrilege.

Once again, the farmers’ leaders initially condemned the killing but, later, sought to blame the BJP Governments at the Centre and Haryana for ‘letting the movement continue’ and not surrendering to their demands. Despite the visual evidence, they claim the incident didn’t take place inside their camp. The truth is that, were it not for the anti-Modi forces present at their blockades, which include Maoists, Naxalites, ‘Khalistanis’, religious fundamentalists, aspiring ‘social activists’, et al, they would be left with just the core group of ‘arhatiyas’ who are actually affected by the new laws. That would not be enough of a pressure group. Having willingly enough got into bed with the fundamentalists, there can be no escaping the consequences. The wise would quit the agitation at this point, but they are certainly not ‘Gandhians’.